Dynamic, creative, durable

Importexa: a successful SME

Founded in 1976, our company specialises in the creation of all kinds of customised workwear and accessories, reflecting private and public company brands. We provide the comprehensive management of the manufacturing and production line for workwear and advertising accessories, from concept and design to production and delivery, not to mention our after-sales service. At Importexa, we work with several companies, subsidiaries and groups, in Switzerland and abroad, active in the private and public primary, secondary, tertiary sectors.

At first: promotional textiles

Initially, at Importexa SA, we were involved in the creation of customised workwear and accessories that reflected private and public company brands. Developing specific product lines (jackets, windcheaters, hats, caps, trousers, linen, bags, luggage, gift items, etc.), we gradually built up a loyal Swiss and international client base.

ISA, our technical workwear brand

In the 80s, demand for high-quality workwear became increasingly urgent. At Importexa, we were one of the first Swiss companies to meet this demand by creating a specific brand. Today, ISA Technical Wear comprises four speciality ranges (ISA Workwear, ISA Technicalwear, ISA Corporateline and ISA Bagline). These new technical and functional workwear lines must meet the standards for safety, visibility, water resistance and cold resistance, while reflecting the brand of the companies or institutions that are buying them.

A focus on quality, a commitment to ethics

Philippe Cloux took over the management in 2000, and under his leadership, we are constantly striving to improve the quality and ethics of our operations and products. This focus led to the award, in 2001, of the ISO 9001 certification, an exercise that is both beneficial and restrictive for SMEs. Shortly thereafter, the company was awarded the Max Havelaar (2008) and Oeko-tex (2008) labels for certain product lines, highlighting our commitment to sustainable development.

Most recently, our creation of the FairWell label, in 2009, has demonstrated that the professional textiles or workwear can be attractive and functional, as well as organic and Fairtrade. However, as all professionals know, a brand’s credibility depends essentially on the traceability of its products and the checks carried out on its production chain. In this respect, at Importexa, we have taken the bull by the horns and developed FairTrace, a revolutionary mobile phone monitoring system, which was introduced in 2012.

Controlled international development

Growing, yes, but not exploding! Over the years, at Importexa, we have made this strategy our own. In 2009, we opened a subsidiary in neighbouring France (in Giez, near Annecy) with more than 1,000m² of office and storage space. We set up offices in Zurich (2008), Paris (1995) and Hong Kong (2012). In 2011, a management team was set up for the operational management of key activities.

Recognising the potential of Tunisia’s textile industry, in 2012, the management also created a production platform in Monastir. There, a small team works on prototyping, pattern making, production, drafting of technical sheets and raw material storage. This functions as a bridgehead for local subcontractors.

This international development has led to sizable contracts being signed with foreign companies, for example, in 2012, the supply of workwear for the 9,000 employees of the 2,800 Total France service stations.

For a customised service

Today, it is not enough to manufacture workwear and accessories. It is necessary to transport them, clear them through customs, store them, distribute them, sell them, etc. For several years, at Importexa, we have offered to manage all these services for our clients. This customised service is now our distinctive brand and a key element in terms of added value.